NASA announces that the Chandra space telescope (x-ray) is down

After Hubble, it’s the turn of Chandra to find themselves in the lurch. The US space agency has confirmed that the X-ray space telescope has been down since February 9, 2022. “On Wednesday, February 9, 2022, routine monitoring data from NASA’s Chandra X-ray Observatory indicated a power supply issue in the craft’s high-resolution camera” says NASA in its press release. NASA engineers suspended all ongoing science operations and Chandra’s instruments were placed in “safe” mode while a solution was found.

The space agency still plans to resume Chandra’s activities next week using the other telescope instruments that are still functional. Only the Advanced CCD Imaging Spectrometer (ACIS imaging spectrometer) is currently affected by this technical glitch. As a reminder, Chandra was placed in orbit on July 23, 1999. Its main role is to observe X-ray emissions from the “hottest” areas of the universe, either supernovae, galaxy clusters or even matter around black holes. Hopefully the story will end for both Chandra and Hubble, which was able to resume service after a series of outages.

Leave a Comment